5 Steps to Make Cold Calling Easier
HOW TO COLD CALL:
In this quick YouTube video, Michael Pedone explains 5-key elements to make cold calling easier so you can be more successful at doing it.
Michael Pedone: Hey everybody! It’s Michael Pedone with SalesBuzz.com. Today I want to answer a question that I got regarding cold calling. And the question was really this, “Will cold calling ever be easy?” The answer – the short answer to this – is no. Okay? But, it can be easier, and I think extremely more profitable if you follow these five steps that I’m about to give you. Okay, so, you ready?
Cold calling step number one:
You have to know your ideal customer profile. Know your ICP, right? Ideal customer profile. Nothing will make a sales rep run for the door faster than getting rejected day in and day out, call after call, from prospects that have zero chances of becoming a client. In order for inside sales reps – and I include STRs and be BDRS and account execs and all that, right? – in order for inside sales reps to truly succeed, they’re going to need to constantly self-analyze and improve their sales techniques.
And they will drive themselves mad at trying to critique their own sales strategies and their own sales plays if they’re using data from prospects that constantly reject them but had no chance of ever buying from them. Does that make sense? The real secret to cold calling and prospecting is this: you really need to know who your ideal customer profile is. You want to think deep, not wide, right? Sure, there’s going to be some people on this side that’ll buy; occasionally some people way on the other side that’ll buy occasionally.
Meaning, you have certain aspects of ‘once in a while somebody that has these types of criteria’ will buy; sometimes other criteria will buy. However, if you really analyze the past deals that have come in, you’re going to start to see a pattern. The ones that buy the most, or even what your best clients look like, you’re going to see certain characteristics. And it could be simple as industry, revenue, employee size, right? These are the basics. So, you need to know who your ideal customer profile is and then build a list focused on that. And that’s the first step that you’re going to have to do to start being more successful selling by phone, especially when you’re making cold calls. Alright.
Cold call step number two:
You have to hang up the ‘Captain Wing-It’ cape. I know a lot of salespeople don’t like sales scripts. Here’s the thing. Most sales scripts create more problems than they solve; however, you should have a sales playbook, a step-by-step strategy, to know every step of that sales process – the questions you’re going to be asking, the things you need to find out from your prospect, before ever giving a presentation or what have you. Right. So. the thing is this. Make sure that you hang up the ‘Captain Wing-It’ cape and have a game plan – a sales strategy – for every scenario that you’re going to run into.
And make sure you know what questions, and when to ask, and why to ask, and again how to ask, and what to do with the responses you’re given. You’re going to be way more successful. If you’re just flying by the seat of your pants, your numbers are going to be up and down. And chances are, the amount of sales you get if you’re a ‘Captain Wing-It’ are going to largely depend on the inbound leads that you get now hot they are, rather than your expertise as an outbound cold caller.
Okay, with that being said,
Cold calling step 3:
The cold calling step number three is to roleplay. I know the only thing salespeople hate more than cold calling is to roleplay in front of their peers, but you have to understand something: iron sharpens iron. So, you don’t want to criticize or be criticized, but you definitely want to critique or get critiqued.
This is one of the single most important things that I did early on in my sales career. I made sure when I was working at this one organization, that I saw the top five people who were always in the top five out of about 80 sales reps. And I made sure that I was role-playing with them every morning. I got in early. I begged him to roleplay. They did. I got better. Next year, I was number four in the company. I actually bumped one of the guys out. So, it’s really important to make sure you’re role-playing. Alright, ready?
Cold calling step number four:
Call blocks. See, in my day, when I first got into outbound sales, it was from sunup to sundown you were smiling and dialing. Today, we have a lot of different things going on. We do have some inbound leads coming in. We have way more tools now. We have LinkedIn. We have social selling. We have CRMs. I mean, literally, when I got into inside sales it was, “There’s your leads on a sheet of paper.
There are a hundred sheets of paper that you can pick up and call. Just start dialing.” And that’s the way it was. Well, today there’s a lot of other distractions – good and bad – so make sure that you actually block out call block times for first-time calls. I don’t mean your follow-ups. You should have a call block for that as well. But make sure you get in and early on, especially between the hours of 9:00 am and noon, make sure you have a specific time for your first-time outbound call blocks that you’re doing. And be disciplined to do that. If you do that, you’re going to start to build a pipeline.
Cold-calling step number five:
The last one I’m going to leave you with: teach others when you start to have success…when you know you’re repeatedly successful, and in the long term. I don’t mean just successful in one organization. You really don’t know how great of a
salesperson you are until you can repeat what you’re doing in other organizations. Alright. So, with that being said, once you really have it down, you have a system that you know is going to work, make sure you take the time to teach others. Help somebody else get along. Not only is it good karma, but it will actually – like I said, iron sharpens iron – it’ll actually keep you sharp while you’re helping other people learn the ropes, and cut through the noise, and be more successful.
Alright! I hope this helps. We’ll see you next time. Take care!
– Michael Pedone